Sure was creo! I implemented ASAP and it works great - pure gold !
Actually got my new PR4 tonight
That's great, glad my advice has helped someone! So many just shrug it off and go back to xrumer/scrapebox but the Panda is a hungry beast and he only likes content :-)
Google have an algorithm that determines how fresh content should be for a particular keyword and they always have had that but the difference now is that they seem to have cranked up the sensitivity of it.
It makes sense though because even for keywords that don't necessarily benefit hugely from new content what's going to be better for the users, a site with 500 words of content updated once or a site that updates regularly with 1000+ words of content. It's hard for the spammers to really beat the system too this time because the only way to beat the system is to "join the system", ie more regular good content. I can't see that happening though, so those of us who take the time to write good stuff will have a big advantage.
You don't have to update forever either, just pretty much until you're top spot, or as high as you can go purely from content. Since you're doing a hard keyword you'll want to just keep hammering with fresh content and social bookmarking those updates.
I would even go so far as to say that for SEO the following are now superfluous:
2 way link exchanges
Note I say 'superfluous' because they still work, but it's like using an old manual lawnmower when you have an electric one at your disposal.
So many big SEO companies still use the above, but it's just madness and it's really people blindly ignoring the facts and clinging to beliefs. That's something people do naturally. Once they have an idea that's strongly ingrained people find it VERY hard to let it go and accept something else.
Things are actually simpler than most think. Google are trying to get as close as possible to acting like 1 big omniscient human reviewer that wants to give people the best possible pages in search results. They do want that because by providing people with the best organic results they'll continue to be on top which means they'll continue to make money from Adwords.
I always ask myself what would make most sense for returning the best results for people if I were an omniscient Google algorithm as the algorithm is becoming so advanced that we can actually ask ourselves that question now. 3-4 years ago that question wouldn't make sense because the algorithm was too elementary and 5+ years ago it was very simplistic.
I also read up on the google patents
Also listen to Matt Cutts. He gives so many clues to things. People dismiss him because they think nothing useful can be learned since he is part of Google. He doesn't spread misinformation in a futile attempt to get people to stop doing certain things. If he says something it's because it's actually true. it's in his/Google's best interest you find out what works. If sites didn't do any seo/promotion it would be very hard for Google to rank the best pages for users so they want you to know what works. What they don't tell you is shortcuts to get ranked high and beat the system.
We know that Google has something called a 'self' link which are links that it knows you've created yourself and have very very low value. Forum profiles and comments are self links. I'm not sure about article directories. I don't think they are although I'm not 100% on that one. It's quite likely they are as Google knows about the article directories and it knows that almost no one creates articles to link to other sites except their own. :-)
Article directories are even lower now with Panda due to the fact that the sites themselves aren't as strong since they're so full of duplicate content. So that combined with the above fact makes them really useless. That's why people mess around for months jumping up and down the serps when all they're doing is scrapebox/articles/directories/comments and maybe eventually settle somewhere reasonably high after a while if they've ended up with some good links in there or more likely just keep jumping around.
One thing I don't know is the negative effect certain backlinks have on your site. Too many too fast will definitely knock you down and they actually list a formula in the one of the patents that can explain why that happens and why it's temporary. But that's just for massive xrumer/scrapebox spam. What I'm not sure about is if just having a bunch of articles/directory comments etc can have any negative impact or if it's just netural.
But really for backlinks all you want is social bookmarking(just the big sites, not 1000's of social bookmarks, again that's just the spammer mentality adding superfluity) and guest blog posts linking to you.
For guest blogs go after sites either in your niche if you can, or in a similar niche. Google knows how closely 1 niche is to another. Got a call of duty site? Any gaming site will be good for you etc. For your article make sure you're allowed to link INSIDE the article. Links within relevant content on a good relevant site are as good as it gets. Avoid all 'blogroll' links. Google also knows the difference between them and content links. They're ok though providing it's not a 2 way link. (site a to site b and site b to site a, ie even different pages on the site) but if you're guest blogging and taking the time to write someone an article you'll be able to ask that you can link within that content.
And remember to social bookmark the guest blogging post too.
Oh and if anyone reading this runs an SEO company I wouldn't advise that you just do social bookmarking and guest blogging because some of your customers will be smart enough to have a basic understanding of what you're doing and even if you rank their pages they might think they're not getting enough value as people often associate value not with results but with work. Just mix in some articles, directories so your customers feel like it's a "big complex plan" :-)
Good luck with your journey to page 1 for your keywords, bulldogzg! You're definitely going to get there.